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Interview: UFC co-creator Campbell McLaren

Campbell McLaren talks to Kingdom MMA 'I would have never sold the UFC'

Monday, 30 June 2014

Extra Tickets for UFC Dublin Released July 1st

Extra Tickets for UFC Dublin Released July 1st

Extra tickets to The UFC's highly anticipated Dublin event are to go on sale Tuesday 1st July, following an unprecedented demand which saw the arena sell out in a matter of minutes.

UFC Fight Night Dublin: MCGREGOR vs. BRANDAO will take place at The 02 Arena in Dublin on Saturday 19th July and will see UFC star and local Irishman Conor “The Notorious” McGregor face up against Brazilian Diego “DB” Brandao in the main event.

After reconfiguring the in-house production at the sold-out O2 Arena, the UFC has been able to add extra seating to the event. This increased capacity will ensure UFC Fight Night Dublin shatters the company’s previous records in the capital for attendance and box office sales.

UFC Executive Vice President and Managing Director in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) Garry Cook said:
“We’re ecstatic that this event has captured people’s imagination like it has and sold out in its original plan. The level of support is unbelievable and The O2 will have a blistering atmosphere from the very first horn. UFC Fight Night Dublin is already the most successful UFC event ever in Europe, and we are already planning more events throughout this year and into 2015.”
Tickets to the Dublin event, which is the fourth UFC event to take place across Europe and the Middle East this year, will be available via and

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Campbell Mclaren co-creater of the UFC talks to Kingdom MMA "I would have never sold the UFC"

by Chris Marzella @ChrisMarzella

Everything comes in cycles.

Dips in popularity, followed by meteoric rises.

Today UFC has taken the sport of mixed martial arts to a new stratosphere. The UFC itself is currently at the peak of its powers, a long way away from the tired product that the Fertitta brothers and Dana White when Zuffa purchased the organisation back in 2001.

The UFC wasn't always a stumbling company looking for the guile of the Fertitta's and Dana White to guide it in the right direction.

In its birth the Ultimate Fighting Championship was a smash hit, must see spectacle and it was partly the brainchild of a Scots-born TV producer.

Campbell McLaren was born in the sleepy Stirling village of Cowie.

Later in life he was one of the men to dream of the weird and whacky world of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Speaking to, McLaren said: "In 1993 I was working at a PPV company owned by the music giant BMG. Every music PPV the company did was losing tons of money. I had a varied background as a TV producer, which included a lot of comedy, and I was hired to find alternatives to the music-losing PPV's.

"I was looking at car racing and demo derby, Lucha Libre from Mexico, horror, magic and comedy -  just about anything that would strike a chord with a young, male audience.

"Art Davie, Rorion Gracie's business partner, called me in April 1993 and gave me a pretty lame pitch, saying 'everybody has turned this down, HBO, Showtime, everybody, you are the only one left'.

"But when he described the Gracie Challenge/ War Of The Worlds idea I loved it. I thought it wasn't edgy or cool enough though. I saw a reality version of Mortal Kombat. I wanted every fighter in their fight style clothing and many different types of fighters; sumo, boxing, karate.

"I was totally intrigued by these Gracies that would fight anyone anywhere. As we developed the idea over the summer of '93 I began getting (VHS) tapes of fighters who wanted to enter. Everyone in the company would crowd into my office to watch - I knew I had a hit!"

The original idea behind the first UFC can only be answered by a select few. McLaren just so happens to be one of those few.

He said: "It was certainly going to be a spectacle. The Superbowl is a spectacle and so is The World Cup, The Indy 500 and so on. But I knew it would last and go beyond one event.

"In July of 1993 I presented my plans to do a minimum of three pay-per-views to a group of WOW investors at The Gracie Academy in Torrance, California.

"My presentation was videotaped and it appears in the Fox Sports documentary Fighting For A Generation. My job was to find pay-per-view's we could do as a series of events not one offs'. The 'one-off' rumour came much later after I had left The UFC."

Art Davie's foresight became a reality when the premiere UFC events broke all kinds of pay-per-view records. McLaren explained: "Everyone got it right away. It worked because it was so simple, brutal, elemental and visceral. But people do not realise the era I call the Original UFC, which covered UFC 1 -12, was amazingly successful.

"I consulted and Exec Produced through UFC 22 but the first 12 really reflected my vision.

"The pay-per-view buy rates were amazing, hitting 350,000 on several occasions. And that was with a PPV universe of 20 million homes; today it is 120 million homes. That is the equivalent of a 1,750,000 buys today. And with no social media, I only had controversy to work with!

"The Original UFC was a pop culture sensation too. By 1996 it had been a cover story in Mad magazine, featured as the ultimate scene in Paramount Picture's Denzel Washington thriller Virtousity, the finale episode of hit TV show Friends that year, and written about by nearly every paper and magazine in the US. It was a top video game, top selling VHS tape and became a huge hit in Japan.

"I launched stars in that era that are still prominent in MMA including; Royce Gracie, Ken and Frank Shamrock, Tank Abbot, Tito Ortiz, Chuck Liddel and Randy Couture. I also brought in my comedian friend Joe Rogan and matchmaker Joe Silva.

"The Joe Silva story deserves it's own article. I created the 'There Are No Rules' and 'Banned In 49 States' marketing because there was no marketing budget. I needed the controversy. But that ultimately led to the dark era that the Zuffa's bought in to. The UFC was huge but then declined until the Zuffa's 2005 hit TV series The Ulitimate Fighter re-invigorated it.

"From 1993- 1996 it rivaled today's popularity and set the stage for the Zuffa era. But the relentless political pressure took it's toll and by UFC 22, when I left, the franchise was in a steep decline."

The creation of the first UFC event was a risk for all involved, despite how confident McLaren was of the smash hit he had on his hands. Now over 20 years later his idea has spawned into a sport of its own.

McLaren commented: "I didn't think I was creating a sport but I knew I was creating a hit. MMA was a phrase coined by UFC commentator Jeff Blatnick to get the word fighting out of the mix and take off some political pressure.

When the time ultimately came for the original owners to pass the product on to Zuffa they sold it for a hefty $2 million. McLaren said of the sale: "I was an employee not an owner. I was long gone by the sale and thankfully had nothing to do with that. I would have never sold the UFC. It's like my baby".

When asked his thoughts on what he believes the circumstances were behind the sale, McLaren said: "Greed and stupidity on the seller's part and genius on the buyer's part."

Despite having no part in what he describes as his 'baby' McLaren lives his life with no regrets. He said: "No what if's. I love the UFC then and now. Dana and Lorenzo have done an amazing job turning my spectacle into a world class, world wide sporting event. They are geniuses - literally. But from 1993 until 1996 I rocked the world too.

"I stay in close touch with Dana and Lorenzo; they are great guys. Remember I developed the Octagon, brought in Joe Rogan and Joe Silva, recruited the Olympic college wrestlers that are now part of the UFC's DNA, and hired or worked with many of the people still at the UFC so I do feel like it's mine...even if I never owned it."

Since parting ways with the UFC McLaren has not been a stranger on the MMA scene. Four years ago he created The Iron Ring for BET and Viacom. The show featured famous rappers Ludacris, Nelly, TI and Floyd Mayweather building teams of MMA fighters. He said: "It was a TV ratings success but was not well received by MMA fans. I learned a lot from the mistakes and applied that to Combate Americas."

Combate Americas is McLaren's newest venture into the MMA realm. He is fronting the organisation which is the first Hispanic MMA franchise which features on on NBCU's mun2 in the US and will be rolling out worldwide next year. The promotion begins its live events this fall and present their first pay-per-view next year.

McLaren explained: "It has been created specifically for the US Hispanic audience, who are huge fight fans, yet not well served by existing MMA franchises now.

"I think I am going to bring in a whole new group of fans to the sport. We have tremendous new and exciting fighters and have brought in great stars like Daddy Yankee to help promote it. Royce Gracie is a big part of the TV series and Bellator's Eddie Alvarez too.

"Everyone I talk to about this says it will be huge. Dana said it will be a big hit.

MMA is the fastest growing sport in the world; the Hispanic audience is the fastest growing demographic in the US; I'm combining the two."

With the UFC set for its first show in Mexico and an attempt to crack the Hispanic market it may appear to be on a collision course with Combate Americas. However, McLaren insists that the two organisations won't be in competition, saying: "I do not think the UFC is targeting US Hispanics. I think they are very focused on Latin America and the world. The US has 60 million Hispanics and many are huge boxing fans. Many cultures other than traditional US culture, have only two sports; soccer and boxing. I'm going after an entirely new audience that may know the UFC or MMA but has never gotten into it. I'm going to bring a whole new group to the sport."

With the current UFC franchise estimated at over $3 billion it is difficult to argue that McLaren, Art Davie and Rorion Gracie's vision wasn't successful, entertaining, intriguing to fans and fighters alike.

McLaren recalled one conversation with the original Ultimate Fighter about the impact the idea had on him. He said: "At the UFC twenty anniversary Forest Griffin told me he wished he had entered the Original UFC but he didn't want to wear those Speedos -he wanted to wear man shorts. I didn't have anything to do with the Speedos."

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Kingdom MMA's FCC 10 Post Event Round Up

FCC 10 - Final thoughts and fighters to look out for

by Alex Dillon @_AlexDillon_

Kingdom MMA bonuses:
Submission of the Night: Aaron Robinson
Knockout of the Night: Chris Humphreys & Mick Stanton
Fight of the Night: Reece Ackers vs Morgan Starkey
Performance of the Night: Ashley Reece

FCC 10 was exceptional. Superbly run by Adam Teh & family as well as all of his staff. Some of the fights were spectacular for amateur level and the pro fights certainly lived up to their bill.

FCC really provides a good platform for up and coming fighters as well as pro’s who are looking to establish themselves.

I witnessed one of the amateur fights of the year in Ackers vs Starkey, it was non-stop throughout the whole fight and that’s what you want to see at amateur level. The belts on the line and neither wants to give up it’s what you would call a proper MMA fight.   

Dominic Wooding is another fighter who impressed me in his victory over Coner Hignett. Wooding is now 7-0 in his amateur career but you wouldn’t even think he’s an amateur with the way he fights. So relaxed and confident in his skill reminding me of fighters like Conor Mcgregor and Gunnar Nelson. At amateur level you see a lot of fighters rush in as soon as they’re tagged but Wooding didn’t seem fazed by anything Hignett had for him and really showcased his talent.

Aaron Robinson from Next Generation in Liverpool is another amateur who’s skill set is exemplary. The way he dispatched a very talented fighter in Javonne Morrison was superb. The technical side of his submission was top quality. Robinson and Wooding will meet at the next FCC event for the flyweight title in which promises to be a contender for fight of the year, trust me, you won’t want to miss it.

Another fighter who has gone under the radar is Craig Humphreys, he is now 3-0 in his last 3 fights and quickly knocked out a very good fighter coming out of SBG Mainline in Manchester which as you know breeds excellent fighters itself.

Ashley Reece again and again seems to turn up at FCC and put on absolute clinics, the ticket price for FCC is worth paying alone to watch this guy fight. As I said before, I’d seen him online through FCC’s you tube page and he’s had some excellent fights on the show before. He’s one of them fighters that comes to fight and the longer the fight goes on the better he gets. You could say he’s the Carl Froch of FCC and it wouldn’t be a silly statement. He’s easily one of the UK’s best amateur lightweights and I’m looking forward to watching in action again soon.

Paul Craig’s submission victory over Jon Ferguson meant he went 3-0 as a pro with all wins coming via triangle choke, he’s definitely one to look out for on the domestic pro circuit considering his finishing rate so far.

Kane Mousah was the fighter I was most looking forward to see fight. I’d heard a lot about him and watched videos and found it crazy how every time he got the chance to punch someone on the ground it was game over. It was like he had cement in his hands and so I was eager to see what he was like when tested. This fight tested him, his opponent Stoyanov attempted RNC’s and arm bars before Mousah weathered it and again won via TKO ground and pound, really impressive. Mousah is a legitmate prospect on the UK lightweight pro scene.

Martin Stapleton had gone 0-2 since signing for Bellator over in the USA so this fight obviously meant a lot to him being in front of a home crowd. He told me in an interview before hand that he was going to put on a show and that was in fact what he did. Straight out of the blocks and Stapleton was landing on his opponent Enchev at will and looking good whilst doing it, great movement and striking combined before he got the standing Guillotine choke finish.

Overall, FCC 10 was a great occasion and if you’re in the north west get down to FCC 11 18th October at the Bolton Macron Stadium, it’s well worth it.

Kingdom MMA Review FCC 10 - Professional Main Card

by Alex Dillon @_AlexDillon_

For the final installment of the FCC 10 review we move on to the professional fights which finished the event. If you have not yet read our review of the amateur fights and the amateur title fights then click on the links.

Professional Fights

The professional part of the fight card was made up of four quality fights.

Paul Craig vs Jon Ferguson 

Straight from the off Ferguson shoots and gets the takedown up against the cage, Craig catches Ferguson in a triangle and Ferguson manages to get out but somehow ends back in, takes some hard punches from the bottom and gets submitted via triangle which is now Craig’s third straight pro victory by triangle choke.

Paul Craig def. Jon Ferguson via Submission (arm triangle) at 1:50 of Round 1

Aaron Aby vs Scott Gregory

Round One
Aby starts off the action by driving for the takedown against the cage and getting Gregory down. From the bottom Gregory manages to reverse the position and end up on top. It does little for him though as Aby manages to get an arm bar in and finish the fight from the bottom. Great submission.

Aaron Aby def. Scott Gregory via Submission (arm bar) at 3:23 of Round 1

Kane Mousah vs Martin Stoyanov

This was the fight I was most looking forward to watching. I had seen Mousah before through FCC’s you tube page and heard plenty about him. Prior to this he had smashed his previous opponents through ground and pound so he definitely brings the excitement factor and he had a strong support as he came out for this fight.

Round One
The fight starts off with Mousah taking the centre and Stoyanov attempting a speculative superman punch which doesn’t come off. Both fighters then take turns to exchange kicks before Mousah tries a spinning kick that just misses. More strikes follow but then Stoyanov gets the fight to the ground and is straight on Mousah’s back. Stoyanov has the hooks in and is looking for the RNC but Mousah does well to defend by staying on his knees, he turns out but Stoyanov looks for the arm bar before Mousah survives again and then begins to open up with his ground and pound. His fans chant ‘smash him’ numerous times and Mousah duly obliges by hammering down on Stoyanov and the referee steps in to stop the fight. Mousah again winning by ground and pound. Formidable when he gets anyone in that position so far in his career.

Kane Mousah def. Martin Stoyanov via TKO (ground and pound) Round 1

Main Event

Martin Stapleton vs Stanislav Enchev

It’s the fight the fans have been waiting for all night and Stapleton comes out to a rapturous reception from the home crowd being a local lad.

Round One
Both fighters start of by swinging and letting their intentions known in this one. Stapleton then lands a thud of punch on Enchev that gets the crowd going, Stapleton continues to use his distance well, dodging anything that Enchev attempts to throw and Stapes is looking solid here. He suddenly throws a few strikes and gets Enchev against the cage in a standing guillotine and finishes it. Great performance from Martin Stapleton.

Martin Stapleton def. Stanislav Enchev via Submission (Standing Guillotine) Round 1

Thank you for reading my review of FCC 10.

Kingdom MMA Review FCC 10 - Amateur Title Fights

by Alex Dillon @_alexdillon_

We continue with our review of FCC 10 by now moving on to the Amateur Title fights. Our review of the earlier amateur fights can be found here.

Vacant FCC Flyweight amateur title

Aaron Robinson vs  Javonne Morrison

This fight was another eagerly anticipated bout with both fighters being very well regarded in the UK amateur flyweight scene.

Round One
The fight gets underway and both fighters are looking to exchange, Morrison lands a few aggressive kicks upstairs before Robinson seems to drop him and immediately take his back before getting in the hooks for a rear naked choke attempt. Morrison trying his hardest to defend and weather it but eventually taps.

Aaron Robinson def. Javonne Morrison via Submission (rear-naked choke) at 1:54 of Round 1 and is the new FCC Flyweight Amateur champion.

Vacant FCC Featherweight amateur title

Reece Ackers vs Morgan Starkey

Round One
The fight gets underway and both fighters start off by swinging hard before Starkey gets the takedown. Starkey takes the back of Ackers and has the hooks in attempting the rear naked choke. For a while, it looks like it’s only a matter of time before Ackers taps as the choke is really tight but backed with a huge support it seems to spur Ackers into hanging on and he manages to defend the choke. Ackers ends up on top but Starkey goes for the leg of Ackers and looks to submit but Ackers escapes again and the round comes to an end.

Round Two
The round starts and Ackers eye looks in a bit of bother after round one but he lands a good head kick and then takes the fight to the ground. The fight makes its way back up to the feet but Ackers is in again pushing the action towards the cage fence before landing some big knees. Ackers gets it down and gets the hooks in but looks to cause some damage to Starkey as he throws down punch after punch as the round goes to an end.

Round Three
Round three begins with both fighters meeting in the centre and exchanging, Ackers throws successive kicks that look to be doing some damage early on to Starkey. Starkey returns but Ackers again throws a good leg kick. The crowd are all pro Ackers, repeatedly chanting his name as the round progresses. Ackers lands another good leg kick before Starkey responds with a decent combo, The fight then turns into a bit of war as both fighters trade knees and good shots of their own. Ackers then takes it upon himself to go for the takedown, gets it and looks to throw some strikes as the round ends.

Round Four
Into the championship rounds and both fighters come out of their corners swinging and going for it, each landing good combos of their own before Ackers takes control and gets the fight to the ground. Ackers gets into half guard and looks to wear down Starkey as he throws shot after shot. The fight is back to the feet and both fighters engage again with Ackers coming off better as he lands a nice head kick which seems to stumble Starkey. Ackers rushes in and gets the takedown and is in the guard looking to work the body of Starkey with some decent shots as the round ends.

Round Five
Great atmosphere at FCC as both fighters come out and touch gloves for the final round, it’s Starkey now who looks for the takedown against the cage but Ackers manages to trip him and lands in side control. Ackers gets his hooks in and lands a few punches before Starkey flips him over and the fight returns back to the feet with a knee landing for Starkey but Ackers responds with a head kick and gets the takedown. The round ends with Ackers reigning down punches on Starkey. Excellent fight that, both didn’t give up and Ackers showed real grit to come through the first round and dominate the rest of the bout.

Reece Ackers def. Morgan Starkey via Unanimous Decision 49-46 (x3) and is the new FCC Featherweight Amateur champion to the delight of the massive support he brought with him.

FCC Lightweight Amateur title

Ashley Reece (c) vs Daryl Golding

I was really looking forward to this one, I've seen Reece fight before through FCC’s youtube channel and he always brings it. Both fighters have previously won FOTN honours at FCC so it promised to be a barn burner.

Round One
The fight starts with Golding coming out super aggressive catching Reece in the process before Reece manages to get the takedown. Reece has top position and starts to hammer down fists, and the rest of the round is more or less the same as Reece dominates from the top.

Round Two
The crowd for this fight is split evenly creating a fantastic atmosphere. Reece comes out and gets the takedown from the off. His wrestling seems to be a real weapon for him so far in the fight. Again Reece looks to throw punches down on Golding, the fight gets back up to the feet momentarily before Reece gets another takedown. The fight ends up back on the feet and both fighters exchange but Reece comes off better with a series of heavy knees to Golding.

Round Three
Reece comes out with a front kick to open the round; Golding answers back but Reece ducks under and takes him down. Reece landing some shots again but Golding lands some of his own from the bottom before Reece postures up and continues to land more punches. Golding tries his best to tie up but Reece is relentless at this point still reigning down heavy blows. Reece gets into half guard and starts throwing down some hard hammer fists which Golding has no answer for at all. Golding lands a few more strikes from the bottom but it’s all Reece who just powers through. The round ends with Reece dominant as he helps Golding to his feet as the bell sounds.

Round Four
Reece comes out with a BANG in the 4th, landing heavy shots on Golding and it looks like the finish is in sight. The crowd certainly sense it too, Reece gets the fight to the ground and starts working some more ground and pound, he’s in half guard and really enforcing his strikes now. Heavy left hammer fists followed by successive rights as the crowd roars him on and with Golding not being able to defend himself, Reece finishes it. Ashley Reece is an excellent amateur talent, always turns up and performs.

Ashley Reece (c) def. Daryl Golding via TKO (ground and pound) at 1:52 of Round 4 and retains his FCC Lightweight Amateur title

Please read our Main Card review for a review of all of the professional fights from FCC 10, which can be found here.

Kingdom MMA review FCC 10 - Amateur Prelims

by Alex Dillon @_alexdillon_

This past weekend I attended Full Contact Contender 10 over in Bolton at the newly named Macron Stadium. For those of you who don’t know about FCC, it’s one of the biggest domestic shows in the UK, hosting both amateur and pro bouts throughout the night with fighters coming from all over the UK and Europe to compete.

Highly regarded UK talents Brendan Loughnane and Pietro Menga hold the shows pro Lightweight and Flyweight title’s respectively and other UK names such as Matt Inman and Martin Stapleton have fought on the show before. It’s also the breeding ground for many of the north west’s up and coming amateur fighters.

Amateur Fights

Ben Singleton vs Mike McGowon

Ben Singleton def. Mike McGowon via TKO (ground and pound) at 1:20 of Round 1

Paul Maverick Orr vs Maciej Dankowski

Maciej Dankowski def. Paul Maverick Orr via TKO (ground and pound) at 1:57 of Round 1

Mick Stanton vs Tom Tynan

This one was probably the fastest knockout I’ve ever seen. I had literally just finished a tweet for the play by play and Tynan had come down crashing right infront of me in six seconds from a massive punch from Stanton.

Mick Stanton def. Tom Tynan via KO (punch) at 0:06 of Round 1

Marcin Bystron vs Chris Thomas

This fight was delayed slightly because of Thomas not having a cup when he came out to the cage I believe. Both fighters started off by swinging hard before Bystron got the fight to the ground. He landed some heavy strikes with Thomas turning to his side before sinking in an arm triangle and getting the win. It looked like Thomas lost half a tooth somewhere during that fight too!

Marcin Bystron def. Chris Thomas via submission (arm triangle) at 1:05 of Round 1

Kyle Keane vs Aaron Dwyer

As soon as the fight started Keane was on the attack with a variety of leg kicks before the fight went to the ground and he finishes it via Guillotine choke.

Kyle Keane def. Aaron Dwyer via submission (Guillotine Choke) at 0:35 of Round 1

James Winstanley  vs Reece Street

Street came into this fight as an independent fighter and a late replacement I believe. The fight started off with the two meeting in the centre before Street attempted a spectacular spinning kick to the head of Winstanley which was quite close to making contact. It was all Winstanley then as he got the fight to the ground first attempting a rear naked choke but ultimately finishing Street off with some powerful ground and pound and forcing Street to tap.

James Winstanley def. Reece Street via TKO (ground and pound/strikes) at 0:55 of Round 1

Danny McCloud vs Adam McGann 

Round One
The fight begins and both fighters meet in the centre with McCloud landing three leg kicks before McGann comes in with a combo of his own. McGann goes in again with the combo before McCloud pushes the action against the cage looking for the takedown. McGann does well to defend the takedown and lands a good left but McCloud again attempts to push him against the cage in hope of a takedown. McGann gains the dominant position and looks to land some knees in the clinch before they break into the centre but he’s back in again with a neat combo. He forces the action against the cage but McCloud replies with some knees of his own before McGann ends the round with a decent left followed by a few more shots.

Round Two
The fighters take the centre again as the second round gets underway and its McCloud looking for the first shots but misses as McGann gets in two shots of his own. McCloud goes in for the takedown and this time gets it. McCloud lands two shots on the ground before McGann's guard opens and the fight is back to the feet. The fight is again dictated against the cage as both fighters exchange knees. McGann trips McCloud, gets the takedown and gets a shot off before the second round comes to an end.

Round Three
The final round begins and both fighters meet in the centre of the cage again, McCloud ducks under a right thrown by McGann and drives the fight to the cage before McGann trips McCloud and gets the fight to the ground. McGann now starts to land his strikes with effect, uppercut, right and a leg kick. McCloud attempts to drive McGann towards the cage again but McGann answers back with another strike as he looks to defend the takedown. McCloud briefly gets the fight to the ground but McGann is straight up and the round comes to an end with McGann landing some knees to McCloud up against the cage. Good fight from both debutants.

Adam McGann def. Danny McCloud via Unanimous Decision: 29-28 (x3)

Joe Kennedy vs Mark McGoldrick

Round One
McGoldrick comes out swinging to start this fight off; he then gets the fight to the floor and looks to reign some strikes down on Kennedy. Kennedy uses the cage well to flip over and get back to his feet just as McGoldrick was looking to take the back. Kennedy now lands some decent shots before McGoldrick fires back with some of his own. As the round draws to a close McGoldrick is attempting another takedown against the cage but it doesn’t come.

Round Two
Round two gets underway with Kennedy landing some vicious strikes but McGoldrick weathers it and gets the takedown straight into side control. McGoldrick then goes into mount and looks to throw down some strikes but Kennedy defends well.  All McGoldrick as he continues to try and damage Kennedy from the top as the second round draws to a close.

Round Three
Kennedy starts the round off firing shots but McGoldrick is straight in pushing the action towards the cage before landing the takedown. McGoldrick gets into full mount and starts throwing some shots into Kennedy who tries his best to tie McGoldrick up but he powers out and lands another heavy shot. With little work going on the ref stands them up and the action resumes with Kennedy coming in with shots but McGoldrick gets him back to the cage and gets another takedown and finishes the round with more ground and pound.

Mark McGoldrick def. Joe Kennedy via Unanimous Decision: 30-27 (x3)

Jim Ratcliffe vs Craig Humphreys

The two fighters come out and meet in the centre, Humphreys throws a front kick which pushes Ratcliffe back before stepping in with a huge right hand which drops Ratcliffe, Humphreys charges in to finish with ground and pound as the referee stops the fight.

Craig Humphreys def. Jim Ratcliffe via KO (punch) at 0:09 of Round 1

Robbie Fallon vs Will Cairns

The fight kicks off with Cairns coming forward but Fallon is straight in for the takedown and gets it into side control. Cairns does his best to try and escape using his knees but Fallon is relentless hammering shots down, he then takes the back mount, reigns more shots down and the referee is forced to stop the fight.

Robbie Fallon def. Will Cairns via TKO (ground and pound) at 0:42 of Round 1

Conor Hignett vs Dominic Wooding

This fight was eagerly anticipated on the amateur flyweight scene across the UK. The winner would get a shot at the belt which would be contested in the fight after this.

Round One
The round kicks off with a touch of gloves and Hignett is immediately on the attack and Wooding fires back with a shot of his own. Hignett is lighter on the feet at the beginning where as Wooding seems to be very relaxed in his stance and not too worried about Hignett's movement. Both then fire off shots of their own in the centre with Wooding executing a head kick and Hignett replying before they separate and play the feeling out game again. Hignett lands a hard kick to the body, Wooding replies and the action is then forced against the cage by Hignett. Looking for the takedown, Hignett drops down for the single leg but Wooding defends well and the round comes to an end.

Round Two
The round starts off with both going for kicks before Wooding attempts a flying knee but slipping in the process. He makes it back to his feet with ease before firing off a jab backing Hignett up but Hignett responds and both exchange strikes again. As the round goes on, the two continue to exchange strikes with Hignett looking to land several kicks where as Wooding goes for a combo to the body. Wooding ends the round being the more aggressive fighter this time round and it’s even going into the final round.

Round Three
The final round begins with Wooding taking the centre and Hignett attempting a spinning back fist but narrowly missing. Both engage in the centre and Wooding lands a big shot which pushes Hignett back to the cage fence, Wooding goes in and ties up whilst landing a solid knee. The action separates and both land shots to the body before Wooding goes up high with a kick followed by another which is blocked. Both end the round the best possible way by trading in the final 10 seconds.

Dominic Wooding def. Coner Hignett via Split Decision 29-28, 28-29, 29-28   

Thanks for reading part one of Kingdom MMA's FCC 10 post fight review, to read our review of the amateur title fights please click here.

FCC 10 Image Gallery

FCC 10 Image Gallery 

by Thomas Young - @ThomBomb17 

FCC 10 took place on Saturday night, and our man Thomas Young was on hand to bring you the finest shots of the evening.

Sunday, 22 June 2014

The Good, the Bad and the GLORY: How well did Last Man Standing fare?

The Good, the Bad and the GLORY: How well did Last Man Standing fare?

by Andreas Georgiou - @AGeorgiouMMA

Artem Levin (left) punishing Joe Schilling - Copyright Glory Sports International

A historic night in kickboxing, capped off with memorable moments and mesmerising fights, Last Man Standing set the bench mark for all future GLORY events.

The Good: From top to bottom the card was stacked. Quite often, with UFC events, there are a few fights on the card that have the audience hooked, and a few more which do the opposite. GLORY seemed to avoid this and had action from start to finish, with the Last Man Standing tournament and two title matches. I think that having strong PPV cards can only benefit the sport, having fights that fans are disinterested in usually equals low PPV buys, but with the social media buzz I hope that GLORY do well in their PPV market so fans can see more nights like Saturday.

With the depth of the card, GLORY did a good job introducing a lot of fighters to a new audience. There is no doubt that last night’s super card was about bringing in new fans to the sport, and from the overnight reaction, it would seem they managed that. Introducing a lot of fighters was something important for GLORY going forward, a handful of middleweights, welterweights and heavyweights, with the majority of them being retained by the organisation. So it was very important for fans to start building their fighter recognition, it’s just a natural thing in sports.

The Bad: If there was anything that hindered the show, it would have to be its length. Although there were lots of good fights, it felt very gruelling watching a four hour PPV (on top of the two hour preliminary show) and especially as a UK viewer where the card started at 1am and ended at 7am, it was sometimes a struggle to stay focused and awake during the show.

Another negative point for me would be the commentary of Ron Kruck and Duke Roufus. At times Kruck made a few mistakes with his commentary, stumbling on his words. Roufus is very knowledgeable with his kickboxing knowledge however I feel that he and Kruck don’t mesh very well. I am a big supporter of Mauro Ranallo, and his experience from PRIDE, Strikeforce and boxing brings a seasoned, accomplished voice to GLORY, something missing at Last Man Standing.

This next point would definitely have to be the biggest gripe of the evening, yet again combat sports fall upon controversial judging scores. Firstly in the Melvin Manhoef vs Filip Verlinden fight, one judge scored the fight 28-28 despite the Belgium dominating most of the fight, and knocking down Manhoef. However the biggest judging call of the evening was the unanimous decision 47-46 win for Joseph Valtellini over Marc de Bonte. Both men scored knockdowns in the fight, but I felt that de Bonte took the last round definitively, thus winning the fight 47-46, but the judges didn’t see it that way. With Neiky Holzken back on the scene, obviously GLORY will be inclined to book a rematch with Bazooka Joe, but I feel a sense of injustice if de Bonte doesn’t get a return fight before the close of 2014.

The GLORY: One of the really enjoyable things from the pay-per-view was the brilliant presenting. I’ll admit that I’m not the biggest fan of Ron Kruck and Duke Roufus on commentary, so it was a breath of fresh air to see the panellist table of Michael Schiavello, Stephen Quadros and Remy Bojansky. I’ve always been a huge fan of “The Voice” Schiavello, the way he construes his language and pitch to create excitement is something un-paralleled in the sport. Quadros is a legend, and fans will remember him in the early days of the UFC. Bojansky needs no introduction, as one of the most decorated Dutch kickboxers ever. These three gelled together really well and I would love to see GLORY maintain their services.

Joe Schilling vs Simon Marcus was an excellent fight from a neutral perspective. Everyone wondered how Marcus would cope under K-1 rules without the use of his muay thai clinches and elbows. The fight itself was the clear best of the night, both men put it all on the line in a crazy quarter final match-up, seemingly without care for the fact that the winner would still have to go through two more opponents. The fight ended in a 28-28 draw, so a sudden death victory round was called. This is something I would love to see in MMA. A tired Marcus didn’t seem up to the challenge, and it was pretty much a formality when he was deducted a point for continually dropping his mouth piece, but moments later Schilling knocked him out, ironically sending his mouth piece flying one last time.   

Although we didn’t see many finishes on the GLORY card, a fantastic knockout by Wayne Barrett had fans screaming de ja vu after his looping hook knocked out an air borne Stoica in similar fashion to Fedor Emelianenko’s knockout of Andrei Arlovski at Affliction: Day of Reckoning.

What did you think of GLORY: Last Man Standing? Leave a comment below or join in the debate on twitter with the handle @KingdomMMA.

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Micky Terrill to shine at SuperKombat World Grand Prix II this Saturday in Romania

Micky Terrill to shine at SuperKombat World Grand Prix II this Saturday in Romania

by Andreas Georgiou - @AGeorgiouMMA

SuperKombat tryout winner Micky “The Thrill” Terrill will return to Romania to take part in the four man Cruiserweight tournament where he will face Patrick van Reese in the opening round live on Eurosport. Fellow tryout winner Jamie Bates will be in the corner of Terrill, having won the light heavyweight tournament back in May.

Micky Terrill had an impressive performance at the World Grand Prix II in May, when he took on Danut Hurduc, dominating the Romania to win a unanimous decision. The victory has now earned the young Brit another chance to further himself in Europe, with SuperKombat president Eduard Irimia branding him a “new hero”.

The second semi-final bout features Cristian Ristea against Moises Baute.

Contender Promotions president Garry Bell took a big risk giving UK fighters the chance to shine on the world stage. With the high level of talent in SuperKombat such as Andrei Stoica, Bell knew he had to find some outstanding talent to represent him. Jamie and Micky both picked up wins in their first fights, proving them more than suitable to represent British kickboxing.

The Middlesbrough based promotion are fast proving themselves as legitimate talent builders, giving unknown fighters the chance to become real life contenders. It’s clear to see that they pride themselves at what they do and a possible long road of success lays ahead for Contender Promotions.
Bell has already revealed some of his plans for later this year, with his Fightstar Hunt rolling out from August, starting with a trip to the legendary VOS gym in Holland. However their next event will take place July 19th and will be dedicated to fallen British serviceman Nathan Cuthberson.

Friday, 20 June 2014

5 Reasons the UFC should re-sign Paul Daley

5 Reasons the UFC should re-sign Paul Daley

by Ben Heather @benheather

Paul Daley's name is once again in the news regarding a possible return to the UFC so Kingdom MMA have come up with 5 reasons why the UFC should re-sign him and forgive him for his controversial past.

1. He's Exciting

Paul Daley always has and always will put on exciting fights. He doesn't know how to be in boring fights. If you are ever bored and want to see some of the most exciting knockouts or fights in MMA then get yourself on to YouTube and search for Paul Daley, you will not be disappointed.

Daley has finished his opponents with some of the most brutal knockouts you will ever see and in my opinion was involved in the best one round fight of all time against Nick Diaz. All in all if he made it back to the UFC the fans wouldn't be disappointed and have to witness a guy afraid of losing, instead they will see a warrior who always comes in to finish the fight.

Just look at some of the fights we have seen recently - Luke Barnatt vs Sean Strickland, Andrei Arlovski vs Brendan Schaub and all of the fights so far in TUF 19. I guarantee you this would not happen in a Paul Daley fight.

2. Selling potential for Fight Pass cards

For the past few years the UK fans as well as some others from around the world have been calling for Paul Daley to come back to the UFC. As for members of the press, they bring up Daley's name every few events in one of Dana's scrums. This proves that Paul Daley still has a big name in the MMA world, can you imagine the response from the fans if Daley got added to the upcoming UFC Dublin card.

Although I don't think the UFC would put Daley straight in to a headline role, he certainly has the draw to be capable of selling tickets based on him alone being on the card for a UK or European event. You can't tell me Paul Daley vs anyone in the welterweight division isn't a better, more exciting fight than some of the co-main events EMEA has seen in the last few years, Dollaway vs Carmont, Pearson vs Couture, Stann vs Sakara etc.

In my opinion, Paul Daley returning to the UFC would certainly get fans talking - love him or hate him, he will create a buzz around that event and his name alone will go a long way to selling a lot of tickets.

3. He matches up well with a lot of top guys

I'm just throwing this out there, in my opinion Paul Daley is the best welterweight in the UK and is in the top 3 welterweights in Europe. I would say only the European elite level fighters such as Gunnar Nelson and Tarec Saffiedine are up there with him on the European scene. Can you imagine Saffiedine vs Daley - fireworks.

Thats not all, Matt Brown vs Paul Daley, Carlos Condit vs Paul Daley, Tyron Woodley rematch, Erik Silva vs Paul Daley, all these fights are ridiculously exciting, mouth-watering bouts which are extreme winable fights for someone of Daley's calibre.

Sure Daley has struggled in the past with being taken down by wrestlers and I am sure if he returns he will be tested again, however, but if the fight stay's standing for long enough Daley can finish just about anyone in the UFC welterweight division.

4. He is better than a lot of the guys the UFC has signed lately

Look at all the fighters who have signed for the UFC in the past year. With all due respect tell me, if Dashon Johnson who recent joined the UFC with a 9-0, but against opponents with a combined record of 13-50 is a UFC calibre fighter? If he is, then Paul Daley definitely is.

A quick glance at the fighters section on shows a welterweight division with guys like Daniel Sarafian(1-3), Bobby Voelker (0-4), Peter Sobatta (1-3) etc signed to the promotion. I promise you, if you give Paul Daley 4 fights back in the UFC he will have a better record than any of those guys.

With the UFC doing more and more shows, the level of talent being signed by promotion of late is reducing. Global expansion means the addition of more local talent, who in most instances just simply aren't cut out for the UFC. Paul Daley is still an elite level fighter and until he is given the chance in the UFC again will not be able to do anything other than what he is doing of late to prove he can still compete at the top level by beating lower level guys.

5. He is sorry

I do not know how many more times he can say he is sorry or how many different methods he can use to apologise. He has apologised on his Facebook page, in interviews and even recently sent a letter to the UFC to apologise again.

That being said though, ultimately the decision as to whether Daley will ever return to the UFC is going to be made by one person and as of last week Dana White still wouldn't be happy about him returning. I only hope that opinion changes in the near future as if Paul Daley decides to stick to MMA the UFC is the promotion where somebody as skilled as Daley deserves to fight. Life is about living and learning and Daley has done that, at some stage we can only hope Dana White will be willing to forgive and forget.

An MMA Fans Guide to Glory's Last Man Standing Tournament

An MMA Fans Guide to Glory's Last Man Standing Tournament

by Chris Houten - @mrhouts

Saturday night will see Glory World Series descend on The Forum in Inglewood, California for one of the most stacked shows kickboxing has ever seen in Glory Last Man Standing. At the heart of the card is Glory's 8 man middleweight tournament featuring the best 187lb fighter on the planet.  

With no UFC card this weekend, and with such huge hype behind the Last Man Standing tournament on social media, it's likely MMA fans who have never seen Glory before will tune in to watch the show on BT Sports. Here, we break down the Glory Last Man Standing tournament for MMA fans who have limited knowledge of the 8 men taking part in this illustrious middleweight competition.

Artem Levin
Ranked at number 1 in the Glory Middleweight rankings, Artem Levin is one of the most highly decorated fighters taking part in the Last Man Standing tournament. Captain of the Russian National Muaythai Team, career highlight include WBC Muay Thai World Champion, It’s Showtime World Champion, and WMC European Champion titles, to go long side his 5 IFMA World Muaythai championship titles.

A slippery fighter who is tough to hit, Levin employs an evasive style which has seen him likened to Floyd Mayweather Jr. The most accurate striker in the 8 man tournament according to Compustrike with 42% of the his strikes landing, Levin enters the Glory tournament with 33 TKOs from 47 wins, 4 losses, and 1 draw in his 53 fight career. Levin has fought 2 of the 8 contenders in the Last Man Standing tournament, losing to both Joe Schilling, and Simon Marcus.

Alex Pereira
The biggest underdog in the Last Man Standing tournament, 26 year old Brazilian Alex Pereira made a slash on the international kickboxing scene earlier in the year when when he defeated former UFC competitor Dustin Jacoby to win the 2014 Glory Middleweight Contender Tournament Champion.

A former professional boxer, Periera is known for his dangerous hands and big finishes which has seen him take 21 of 30 victories inside the distance. Ranked at 7 in the Glory Middleweight rankings, Periera is a rising star in kickboxing but will be taking a huge step up in competition when he faces Artem Levin in the opening round of the Last Man Standing tournament. 

Joe Schilling
A poster boy of American Kickboxing, Joe Shilling is current ranked no. 2 on the Glory Middleweight Rankings. A Muy Thai striker who has completed in professional boxing, and mixed martial arts where he went 1-3, before joining the Glory promotion, Schilling won the Glory Middleweight World Championship Tournament in 2013, a title which joins his list of accolades including WBC Intrim World Championship & MTAA United States Super Middleweight Championship title.

With a record of 16 wins with 10 TKOs and 5 losses, Shilling will be fighting Simon Marcus at Glory 17 who he has lost to on 2 previous occasions. Of the 7 other men fight as part of Glory Last Man Standing Tournament Schilling has fought 2 other men in the tournament on previous occasions - Artem Levin who he beat to win the Glory MW tournament, and Wayne Barrett who he lost to in his most recent bout. MMA fans will be interested to know Schilling was a sparing partner for Nick Diaz ahead of his UFC 143 bout with Carlos Condit, and has kickboxing victories over former UFC fighter Chris Sprang, and RFA contender Chidi Njokuani.

Simon Marcus
Undefeated in 39 pro bouts, Simon Marcus makes his Glory debut on Saturday against Joe Schilling who he has been already on two previous outings. Ranked at number 1 in the world by respected kickboxing outlet, Marcus’ only blemish on his illustrious career is a draw against RFA contender Chidi Njokuani where he lost a point for illegal blows.

Highly decorated, WBC Muaythai Light Heavyweight Title, WLF Kickboxing Light-Heavyweight World Champion Title, and Lion Fight Light-Heavyweight World Title, are just a few of the honours you will find in Marcus’ trophy cabinet.'s North American Male Fighter of the Year 2012, and 2013, Marcus will will be one of, if not the favourite to win Glory Last Mad Standing having previous beaten 3 of the contestants he could face on route to the championship - Filip Verlinden, Joe Schilling, and Artem Levin. He enters the tournament with a professional record of 39 wins (24 KOs), 0 losses, 1 draw.

Wayne Barrett
Ranked at 3 in the Glory Middleweight rankings, Wayne Barrett is a rising star in the world of kickboxing thanks to an impressive victory over fellow Last Man Standing tournament contender Joe Schilling, in a bout where he was a +200 underdog. At just 4-0 as a pro, Barratt is the least experience competitor in the tournament, however the orthodox striker paid his dues as an amateur, amassing a near-perfect 19-1 record with 15 knockouts, picking up a WKA Amateur United States Cruiserweight (-86 kg/189 lb) Muay Thai Championship along the way.

One of only 2 men in the tournament to enter with perfect professional records - the other being Simon Marcus 3 of Barrett's 4 victories have come by knockout, giving Barrett has the highest finishing percentage amongst the fighters taking part in the Last Man Standing tournament. He is the most accurate kicker amongst the challengers, landing 61% of his leg strikes according to CompuStrike.

A Golden Gloves Champion in his native Georgia, Barratt now lives in New York and trains at Renzo Gracie Fight Academy along side UFC fighters such as Costas Phillippou, and Gian Villante, as well as Bellator welterweight champion Douglas Lima.

Bogdan Stoica

The youngest of 8 Glory Last Man Standing Contenders at 24 years old, Romanian Bogdan Stoica makes his Glory debut when he takes on takes on Wayne Barrett in the opening round of the last man standing tournament.

Hailing from a Wushu background, winning the Romanian National Wushu Championsips in 2009, Stoica is known for using an arsenal of kicking techniques including flying kicks, knees, and axe-kicks. A former SuperKombat Cruiserweight Champion, the majority of Stoica’s fights have taken place in his native Romania, and he has yet to fight on US soil.

A deadly striker with a record of 38 wins (29 KOs), 5 losses, Stoica holds the record for fastest TKO for promotion Local Kombat, defeating Dženan Poturak in just 8 seconds. His power and kicking techniques make him a real threat in the tournament however Stoica will need to dig deep to bounce back for the unanimous decision losses he has suffered in his last 2 outings.

Filip Verlinden
With 54 fights on his record, Filip Verlinden has the most kickboxing experience of all the fighters taking part in the Glory Last Man Standing Tournament. A former IFMA World Champion Muay Thai, and WKA World Champion title holder, Verlinden has fought 7 time for Glory putting together a 4-3 record, although many of his losses have come at a higher weight.

Known as 'The Puncher' because of his preference for boxing, Verlinden counts Manny Pacquiao amongst his heroes. A product of Golden Glory in The Netherlands, a gym which can be credited for the success of Semmy Schilt, Marloes Coenen, the Overeem brothers, Sergei Kharitonov and more, Verlinden has previous lost to Simon Marcus who is also part of the Last Man Standing Tournament. Ranked at 4 in the Glory Middleweight Rankings, and 9th in the world by, Verlinden is know for his fast hands which has seen him take 42 victories in 54 outings, with 16 of his victories coming by TKO.

Melvin Manhoef
The oldest man in the competition at 38, Melvin Manhoef has had an illustrious career in both kickboxing and MMA.

A former Cage Rage Light-Heavyweight champion, Manhoef has fought for some of the finest MMA promotions in the world including Strikeforce, Dream and ONE FC where he has finishes some of the toughest fighters on the planet including Cyborg Santos (twice), Ian Freeman, Mark Hunt, Sakuraba, Kazuo Misaki, and Dennis Kang. In 28 victories, Manhoef has finished 26 of his opponents inside the distance.

Ranked at 8 in the Glory Middleweight rankings, and 7th in the world by, Manhoef career in kickboxing has been almost as impressive as his MMA career putting together a professional record of 37 Wins (27 (T)KO's, 10 decisions), 11 Losses, however he has struggled when he has come up against world class opposition, losing his last 4 kickboxing bout, all be it to kickboxing legends Zabit Samedov, Tyrone Spong, Gokhan Saki, and Remy Bonjasky.

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Cathal Pendred Signs for The UFC, Meets Mike King in Dublin

Cathal Pendred Signs for The UFC, Meets Mike King in Dublin

by Chris Houten - @mrhouts

Fresh off a stint on this season's Ultimate Fighter, Cathal Pendred has signed a contract with the UFC and will join SGB Ireland teammates, Conor McGregor,  and recently signed Paddy Holohan on July's UFC Fight Night card in Dublin.

UFC Officials have today confirmed Cathal Prendred will meet Ultimate Fighter season 19 teammate Mike King at UFC Fight Night 46 at The o2 Arena in Dublin, on July 19. UFC Fight Night 46 will stream live on UFC Fight Pass, and is also expected to be shown on BT Sports in the UK. Irish fans will be able to watch the show on free to air 3e. It is not yet know whether the fight will take place on the events the preliminary portion, or the main card.

One of the hottest prospects in European MMA, Cathal Pendred (13-2-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) was widely tipped to take a place on the UFC roster at some stage following a series of victories which saw him beat some of the finest welterweight in Europe including Che Mills and Gael Grimaud, however the Irishman opted to join season 19 of The Ultimate Fighter rather than wait for the call from the UFC to come.

In a Ultimate Fighter first, Pendred did not have to fight for his place to get into the house, as other did, after the UFC could not find a fighter to take him on for various reasons.

Picked 3rd by Team Penn, Pendred kick-started the season by defeating Hector Urbina in the quarterfinals via unanimous decision. In the semifinals, he lost a razor-thin split decision to now-finalist Eddie Gordon, a bout which many feel, including Dana White should have gone the other way.

His opponent, Mike King (5-0 MMA, 0-0 UFC) defeated Nordine Taleb to earn a place in The Ultimate Fighter season 19 house, before losing a close decision in the quarterfinals Eddie Gordon,  in a bout where King suffered a gruesome eye poke but continued to fight despite the injury.

A talented wrestler, Mike King has never been the distance in his 5 professional fight career dating back to 2011 with 4 submission - 2 due to strikes, and 1 TKO. When he steps into the octagon to face Pendred it will be 18 months since his last professional bout, excluding his time in TUF. 

With the addition of Pendred vs King UFC Fight Night 46 includes:
Conor McGregor vs. Diego Brandao
Zak Cummings vs. Gunnar Nelson
Ian McCall vs. Brad Pickett
Ilir Latifi vs. Tom Lawlor
Cody Donovan vs. Nikita Krylov
Phil Harris vs. Neil Seery
Trevor Smith vs. Tor Troeng
Naoyuki Kotani vs. Norman Parke
Patrick Holohan vs. Josh Sampo
Mike King vs. Cathal Pendred

Stay tuned to for all the latest on UFC Fight Night 46 Dublin

UFC Partner with 3e in Ireland for UFC Fight Night Dublin

UFC Partner with 3e in Ireland for UFC Fight Night Dublin

The UFC has announced its first ever free-to-air broadcast agreement in Ireland.

UFC FIGHT NIGHT DUBLIN: MCGREGOR VS. BRANDAO, which will take place on 19th July at the O2 Arena in Dublin, will be broadcast on channel 3e in Ireland. 3e, part of the TV3 network, will broadcast the main card on a live basis from 8pm, together with features and enhanced editorial across the TV3 Group in the lead up to the event.

This is the first time a UFC event will be broadcast to a terrestrial audience in Ireland, marking a significant step forward for the organisation in this region.

TV3 reaches in the region of 3.5million individuals each month, equivalent to 85.1% of the available viewing population. It is the largest commercial TV channel in Ireland, and has a bigger market share for adults than BBC1, UTV, Channel 4 or Sky 1 combined.

Garry Cook, Executive Vice President and Managing Director of UFC Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), said:
“The popularity of the UFC in Ireland continues to grow at an enormous rate. With a number of talented Irish fighters on the card and the record breaking sell-out audience at the O2 arena, it was only right that we also offered access to this incredible event to audiences in Ireland via a free to air TV agreement. We are incredibly excited to make this announcement and we are confident that this is only the beginning of things to come for our sport in Ireland.”
Interest in the UFC is not only growing in Ireland, but it continues to soar elsewhere across Europe and in the Middle East. Already this year the UFC has delivered live events in London, Abu Dhabi and Berlin, with plans to host two further EMEA events after Fight Night Dublin, before the end of 2014.

The TV3 Group has an impressive track record in bringing major international sporting events in to homes across Ireland. The network has televised more than 150 live UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League games since 2009. TV3 have also secured the live broadcast rights in Ireland for all 48 matches for the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

TV3 Group Head of Sport, Kieran Holden, said;
“We are thrilled to be able to broadcast Conor McGregor’s homecoming bout for UFC’s Dublin event on 3e, on 19 July. Conor’s progress through the MMA ranks has been phenomenal and we are delighted that we are able to show this event to his growing fan base here live and for free on 3e.”
 Stay tuned to for all the latest on UFC Fight Night Dublin

Contender Promotions Dedicates July Show to Fallen Soldier Nathan Cuthberson

Contender Promotions Dedicates July Show to Fallen Soldier Nathan Cuthberson

by Andreas Georgiou - @AGeorgiouMMA

In the past Contender Promotions have prided themselves on putting on a show for the fans in their North East base of Middlesbrough, now they again show their class by dedicating their highly touted July 19th event to fallen British hero Nathan Cuthberson.

Nathan, who was serving his country under 4 platoon, B company 2PARA in Helmand Province, Afghanistan when he was tragically killed by a suicide device. On the July show, all Pegasus Muay Thai fighters including head coach; former PARA and armed forces, Dave Corrigan will pay special tribute to Nathan in their bouts. They will all be wearing custom t-shirts dedicated to Nathan, and believe it will strongly bond them all.

Dave Corrigan is incredibly passionate about raising awareness regarding what our serving troops go through on a daily basis. Pegasus Muay Thai actively donate and help to raise money in Nathan's name to support his family and others that have suffered the loss of loved ones.

On July 19th Contender Promotions promoter Garry Bell will be holding a minute silence to show respect for all our countries servicemen and women worldwide and to remember those real life warriors who have gave their life serving to protect our country.

For Contender Promotions to show their support to our countries troops is detrimental to the integrity and heart behind the promotion, showing the passion and love given to all of the fighters and fans involved. It is truly the Contender Promotions family.

“All fighters that step through the ropes to compete are warriors 100% but the men and women that choose to dedicate theirs life and who work hard to protect our country are the True un-sung heroes.”

“Contender Promotions are honoured to be a part of this and would really like to invite every fan attending the Event to join us in a show of respect.”

For more information on Contender Promotions head to their website

WFS 1, Was it a Successful First Outing. Interviews and all the results

WFS1, Was it a Successful First Outing. Interviews and all the Results

by Andreas Georgiou - @AGeorgiouMMA

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Everybody knows that first impressions are important, and none more so in MMA, so if we had to make an immediate judgment of new boys Warrior Fight Series from their first event in Swanley then their sure is a bright future for Harry Shoebridge’s organisation.

Jefferson George captured the WFS Lightweight championship after he beat Jamie Reynolds by unanimous decision in a very hard fought contest, as the promotion’s first champion was crowned.

“It was a good experience fighting on a new show, and it was great to share this with my Morefire Icon BJJ teammate John Shink who also gained a win on the night. It was a good fight, I felt relaxed, decisive in my decisions and composed throughout. I'm really excited to have a second belt, this time in a different weight class and I look forward to defending my new title.”

Mike Neun, although picking up the win in the Light-heavyweight main event, was unable to capture the promotion’s inaugural 205lb title due to him missing weight, however Neun still had positive things to say after his unanimous decision win over Lloyd Clarkson.

“Fighting on WFS was a good experience. All the staff tried extremely hard to make it the best show they could. The fight was the hardest of my career physically and I had to dig deep to get through it. He had a concrete head and the more I beat him the harder he seemed to become. I sort of stuck to a game plan but I cut weight too hard and I was struggling with my cardio as a result.

I could have done a lot of things different but hindsight is a wonderful thing! As for the title, I'm pretty gutted, I worked so hard for that fight, I wished it was different but I just couldn't get the weight off, the first and last time I will ever do it, I like my food too much but it's changing and that's because that title should be mine right now.”

Official results:

Light Heavyweight Title - Mike Neun def. Lloyd Clarkson via Unanimous Decision*

Lightweight Title - Jefferson George def. Jamie Reynolds via Unanimous Decision

Heavyweight -Pelu Adetola def. Jay Oliver via TKO (Strikes) – 0.50 Round 1

Featherweight - Dean Trueman def. Dan Shortman via Submission (Strikes) – 3.33 Round 1

Welterweight - Manuel Pais def. Jonny Donoghue via Submission (Armbar) – 1.34 Round 1

Unified Amateur Rules Undercard

Welterweight - Zeki Faulds def. John Reid via TKO (Strikes) – 2.07 Round 1

Featherweight - Kane Charig def. Oliver Jones via Submission (Rear Naked Choke) – 2.27 Round 1

Bantamweight - John Shink def. Ben Hughes via Submission (Triangle Choke) – 2.08 Round 1

Featherweight - Gregor Jurcic def. Bradley Morris via TKO (in between rounds) – 3.00 Round 1

Catchweight (90kg) - Steve Minns def. Steve Batty via KO – 0.17 Round 1

*Mike Neun failed to make weight so was unable to win the title

Interview: Jon Ferguson Ahead of FCC 10 Bout with Paul Craig

Interview: Jon Ferguson Ahead of FCC 10 Bout with Paul Craig

by Alex Dillion - @_AlexDillon_

Saturday night will see the return of Full Contact Contender at the Reebok Stadium. In their 9 previous shows FCC has quickly become one of the most consistent promotions showcasing rising talent in the UK. FCC 10s Jon Ferguson vs Paul Craig will be no different. Originally scheduled to meet in the co-main event at FFC 5 in May, the bout found its way to FCC 10 after Fist Fighting Championships cancelled their 5th show.

We caught up with Ferguson this week to discuss fighting out the Isle of Man, FCC 10, and of course his opponent Paul Craig.

Dillon: You’re fighting Paul Craig at FCC 10 on Saturday, for those who haven’t seen you fight before tell us a little bit about your fighting style and what fans can expect on Saturday. 
Ferguson: Well my style is pressure, pressure, pressure, I don't want to ever be going back. I signed up to compete so I think all fighters should be engaging.

You are fighting out of the Isle of Man, what is the scene like there?
The Isle of Man is like a lot of places in where we have a growing MMA scene. It is just the one club but with our small population its not surprising.  There are a lot of MMA fans here though.
What is your background and how did you get into MMA?
I played rugby for many years and watched a UFC one day and thought this is pretty awesome. [I] slowly started following it and then thought I reckon I can do this, so turn up to train and now am here.

Coming from the Isle of Man is it difficult to get suitable training partners?
I understand why people would think that but we have actually got a lot of people who have competed at very high levels within there martial art. We have people from Judo, Boxing and Muay Thai, all beasts to train with and learn from. My face and body can confirm that!

As your career progresses do you envision a time where you may need to move a way from the Isle of Man, or are you confident you can build a successful professional MMA career at home?
I won't be moving anywhere. I firmly believe it can all be done here, there are big plans in the pipeline for MMA on the Island. I would happily go and train somewhere for a few weeks as a different experience etc, there are several great clubs around the UK.

Talk to us a bit about your opponent Paul Craig, how much to you know about him and what do you think he does well?
I know of his fights and pretty much see his jits is his strength but that doesn't mean he isn't dangerous elsewhere I would be a fool to think he is not training all areas.

On the flip side, where would you say his weaknesses are?
Not seen a lot of him to know. I would hope he has no striking power and a really weak chin!!! But that won't be the case.

You were meant to fight Paul at FFC5 in Scotland in May. First the date and venue was changed, and then the card was cancelled all together. How was your experience with FFC and would you fight for them if offered a fight in the future?
I would indeed. They were very honest about all that was going on plus it wasn't something they could control, I believe. I am a big supporter of UKMMA and hope to see them get a card together very soon for the people of Scotland to go and see.

Luckily enough you are still fighting Paul on FFC 10. How did you manage to keep this fight together, and how excited are you to set into the cage with Paul after a long period of time training for him?
Am more relieved to be fighting him. I feel at the moment more so just to be competing again. I think both myself and Paul just were happy to both have the fight happen and for either one of us to cancel and try to look for another bout seemed a bit pointless. I have no ill feelings towards him and respect him for wanting to do this.

And you are now fighting one of the UK rising promotions, how happy are you to be fighting for FCC?
Well I knew of FCC before and to be on the card is for me a great moment in my career and helps me show the folks back home that the 'little Isle of Man' can make big things happen.

Paul has a couple inches height advantage over you, is closing the distance something you have worked on in camp?
He is only 2 inches taller so to me that doesn't make a difference (am sure many woman would disagree about a couple of inches). I train with a few guys that are taller than him so height and reach is something am used to and can deal with.

Where do you see your self in a few years? What’s the ultimate ambition in MMA?
My goal is to be the best that I can become within MMA, compete at the highest level and also leave my own stamp on the sport then help the next generation coming through by passing down my past experiences. In a few years I see myself back here talking to you guys about me having a great few years.

Finally, how do you see yourself winning the fight on Saturday?
I never want to be a points fighter so I want to finish the fight. I really want me and Paul to put on a great bout for the fans of MMA and showcase the UKMMA talent.

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

UFC Sign Sam Alvey, Meets Tom Watson at UFC Fight Night 47

UFC Sign Sam Alvey, Meets Tom Watson at UFC Fight Night 47

by Chris Houten - @mrhouts

MFC champion and former TUF contestant Sam Alvey has signed for the UFC and will make his debut against, the UK's Tom Watson at UFC Fight Night 47 in August. UFC officials announced the new booking on Monday.

UFC Fight Night 47 takes place August 16 at Cross Insurance Center in Bangor, Maine, and will be the UFC's debut in the state. 

A cast member on season 16 of The Ultimate fighter, Canada's Alvey (22-5 MMA, 0-0 UFC) made an impression on coach Shane Carwin when he knocked out Leo Kuntz in 47 second to earn his place in the house, a display which printed Carwin to pick Alvey as his number one pick overall. Once on the show however Alvey was unable to replication his success in the fight to get into the house, dropping a unanimous decision to Joey Rivera. 

Following his stink in the TUF house, Alvey joined MFC where he went 3-1 with three straight wins including knockouts of Jay Silva, Jason South and Wes Swofford. His victory over South earned him MFC’s middleweight title, which he later defended against Swofford at MFC 40 in May.

A former middleweight champion with UK promotion BAMMA, Tom Watson has had a tough time since joining the UFC 2 years ago, and will likely need a win over Alvey to keep his job. 

Originally from Southampton, but now fights out of Reign MMA alongside Mark Munoz, Watson made his UFC debut against Brad Tavares at UFC on Fuel 5, which he lost by split decision. He returned at UFC on Fuel 7 to face Stanislov Nedkov who he defeated by second round TKO after being dropped himself in the first round. In his only win of his UFC career Watson earned $100,000 bonus for fight of the night and knockout of the night. 

Following his victory over Nedkov, Watson dropped back-to-back decision losses to Thales Leites, and Nick Cantone in his two most recent outings, which will leave the 32-year-old pretty desperate for a win in his upcoming bout with Alvey.

Following the addition of Watson vs Alvey, UFC Fight Night 47 now includes:
Tim Boetsch vs. Brad Tavares
Shawn Jordan vs. Jack May
Sam Alvey vs. Tom Watson  

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Kingdom MMA speak to Bellator Fighter Martin Stapleton ahead of his fight at FCC 10

Martin Stapleton talks about FCC10, his time in Bellator and the future

by Alex Dillon @_AlexDillon_

Yesterday Kingdom MMA caught up with Bellator fighter Martin Stapleton to discuss his upcoming fight where he will make his "homecoming" as he returns to fight at FCC 10 this weekend. We talk about how the fight came about and also, we discuss what the future holds for Martin and when he will likely return to Bellator.

Alex: Hello Martin, cheers for taking the time out to chat to us before FCC 10, how is your preparation going so far?
Stapleton: Preparation has been awesome for this fight, I've taken things to a new level! I've just been out at Mjulnir MMA in Iceland for the final week with Karl Tanswell and Matt Inman so that has really capped everything off.

Alex: Given that this is your homecoming fight on FCC, a show in which you won their first ever pro MMA fight, how excited are you to be back for such a big occasion?
Stapleton: Yeah I'm just excited to fight full stop!! It's great that it's gonna be a home crowd etc but that's just an extra plus point. The real thing is that i get to go out and show how much my game has raised and i get to do what i love.

Alex: After signing for Bellator, things haven’t quite gone your way. What’s the reason behind coming back to FCC for one fight only? Do you feel as if you need to regain the confidence and form you had in the fights that lead to you being signed by Bellator?
Stapleton: No, i have no need for that. I know wholeheartedly what I'm capable of and I've gone out and made adjustments that will now show the world what I'm capable of. I'm gonna be a World Champion and every fight is just one lesson closer!!
The reason I'm fighting in FCC is pretty simple in that Bellator are allowing me to stay busy before my next fight in the states which is looking like September. I want to get 3/4 fights in this year so this keeps me on that track.

Alex: Obviously, moving into tougher organisations like Bellator come with bigger challenges, how do you balance full time coaching whilst having a training camp for such big fights?
Stapleton: Yeah its hard, and last year i took on way too much. This year, like i say I've made adjustments, brought more balance into my life and re-organised things so my training now has a level of structure i honestly don't think many guys in the World can match. I don't wanna go into too much id rather let my performance do the talking so you'll see what i mean next week!

Alex: Onto your opponent, Stanislav Enchev, a seasoned pro in his own right, have you seen much of him as of yet? If so, are they any weaknesses you are going to look to exploit?
Stapleton: I've seen little bits but honestly I'm not thinking about his game or anyone else's game etc.. I'm aware of what he can do but I'm 100% focused on what i am going to do and i don't think there are many Lightweights out there that can match that.

Alex: What’s your game plan for this fight? Your record boasts a good mix of ko’s, sub’s and decisions where do you think the fight will be won?
Stapleton: My game plan is to finish him! Its that simple! There are no expectations or no predictions, its an MMA Fight and it could end anywhere at anytime. My preparation will allow me to take the finish when it comes and I'll be pressing for that from the start.

Alex: With you being a local lad, a strong crowd is expected to be cheering you on, do you see this as motivation to come out and put on an unforgettable performance?
Stapleton: I'm gonna go out and put on an unforgettable performance regardless!! Where ever the fight is, because i want to. But obviously the home support is gonna be a nice push.

Alex: Back at FCC 9, your gym had a successful night with five out of six wins. Are you going to be looking to get these guys on FCC 10 and make it a real night to remember for the Full Contact Performance Centre team?
Stapleton: There is just one young lad from FCPC making his debut at FCC 10, Adam Hussein. A guy I've got a lot of faith in and I'm very confident he will take the Win home. These amateur guys we've got at FCPC are so dedicated I'm confident in all of them. Its an honour to Coach them.

Alex: What are you looking to do after FCC 10? Straight back to Bellator or is there a chance you’ll stick around for a while and possibly fight on FCC 11 as well?
Stapleton: Well Bellator are talking about a September fight over in the states, after that it just depends. If they get me back in a Tournament I'll be pretty busy over there but if not there is every chance I'll fight again in the UK between my Bellator match ups so I'll have to weigh up my options and take the best route available. Its all down to Bellator really, they call the shots!!

Thank you again for your time Martin, we wish you all the best this weekend and look forward to seeing you in action on Saturday night.

Saturday, 14 June 2014

Video: Paddy Holohan 2014 MMA Highlights

Video: Paddy Holohan 2014 MMA Highlights

by Chris Houten - @mrhouts

Not too sure who new UFC Flyweight Paddy 'The Hooligan' Holohan is? Don't worry Christopher Hegarty also know as Bloodstream MMA, has got you covered with this exception highlights video, showing you exactly what to expect from the SBG Ireland fighter when his makes is UFC Debut against Josh Sampo next month.

You can check out of of Hegarty's videos on his Youtube channel HERE, and you can also follow him on twitter @BloodstreamMMA

UFC Sign Paddy Holohan, Meets Josh Sampo in Dublin

UFC Sign Paddy Holohan, Meets Josh Sampo in Dublin

by Chris Houten - @mrhouts

UFC officials have today confirmed Irish prospect Paddy Holohan has signed with the promotion and will meet Josh Sampo at UFC Fight Night 46 in Dublin.

UFC Fight Night 46 takes place July 19th at The O2 in Dublin, and is headline by Conor McGregor vs Diego Brandao. The event will stream live on UFC Fight Pass, and will also be broadcasted on BT Sports in the UK. It is not known yet if Holohan vs Sampo will feature on the preliminary card or the main card.

Fighting out of SBG Ireland alongside top Irish fighters such as UFC Fight Night 46 headliner Conor McGregor and TUF 19 stars, Cathal Pendred and Chris Field, 26-year-old Paddy Holohan is currently riding a 10 fight unbeaten streak, enough to earn the Irishman a contract with the UFC.

Formerly a bantamweight, Paddy Holohan (9-0-1 MMA, 0-0 UFC) tried out for season 18 of the Ultimate Fighter but was knocked out of the fight to get into the house by Josh Hill. A veteran of top Irish promotion Cage Contenders, it will be 2 years since Holohan last fought professionally when he steps into the Octagon at UFC Fight Night 46.

A pro since 2009, Sampo (11-3 MMA, 1-1 UFC) made his UFC debut at Novembers TUF 18 finale defeating Ryan Benoit by Rear Naked Choke while putting on a fight of the night winning performance. However as Sampo missing weight before the bout, he forfeited his £50,000 bonus cheque to Benoit. Following the victory over Benoit, Sampo then went on to fight former Bellator champion Zak Makovsky, who he lost to by unanimous decision at UFC 170. The lost to Makovsky snapped a five fight win streak for the 29-year-old who has 6 submissions in 11 victories.

With the addition of Holohan vs Sampo, UFC Fight Night 46 card includes:

    Conor McGregor vs. Diego Brandao
    Zak Cummings vs. Gunnar Nelson
    Ian McCall vs. Brad Pickett
    Ilir Latifi vs. Tom Lawlor
    Cody Donovan vs. Nikita Krylov
    Phil Harris vs. Neil Seery
    Trevor Smith vs. Tor Troeng
    Naoyuki Kotani vs. Norman Parke
    Patrick Holohan vs. Josh Sampo

Stay Tuned to for all the latest on UFC Fight Night 46


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